Employment of women and young people in the focus of social dialogue

On 27th October 2014 a panel discussion was held on “The European face of Sofia: quality jobs for quality services in the public transport sector”, as part of a Youth forum 21st century Association project, funded by Sofia Municipality – “Youth partnership for European quality of public transport sector in the capital city”. Among the participants in the forum were Liubomir Hristov – deputy mayor of Sofia Municipality in charge of transport and communications, Ekaterina Yordanova – president of FTTUB, Daniela Alexieva – president of Youth forum 21st century Association, experts from FTTUB and CITUB, as well as representatives of the Youth Committee and youth network of FTTUB.

Dr Daniela Pastarmandzhieva presented the results of a research on the reconciliation of work and family life. The analysis of the results shows 41% of women having trouble reconciling work and family life and believing there’s room for improvement. The majority of the respondents (63%) indicated that they haven’t got enough time for their private lives. Also, 80% said that the main obstacles to shifting to a part-time job or a flexible working time – as one of the measures for overcome this problem, are the smaller salaries and the fear of dismissal. In this conjunction A number of proposals were made with respect to this, so that companies’ policies could be upgraded through the mechanism of collective bargaining.

As a first step in the right direction, a Memorandum of cooperation was signed between Sofia Municipality, Youth forum 21st century Association and the Youth Committee of FTTUB as a representative of young workers in urban public transport in Sofia. For FTTUB the memorandum was signed by Georgi Georgiev, co-chair of the Youth Committee.

By this act the stakeholders agreed to work together to promote the employment of women and young people in the urban public transport in the capital city through adequate policies to reconcile work and private life. The topic will be placed on the agenda of the social dialogue, which will provide two-way communications between young people and the local authorities.

The president of FTTUB Ekaterina Yordanova expressed her conviction that the activities related to the implementation of the Memorandum will enable attracting more women to work in the urban public transport system by improving the current working conditions and solving many of the current problems they are facing. She said:” Together with Sofia Municipality we endorsed best European practices in favor of the transport workers. The social dialogue within the municipality is constructive and smooth. The proof is the Memorandum for cooperation in urban public transport we just signed a few days ago which committed us to implementing the Memorandum of Understanding signed between ITF and UITP. The cooperation we have built over the years is a necessary and sustainable foundation for the initiation and implementation of specific policies at the workplace.”

Liubomir Hristov assured the participants in the forum that Sofia municipality will continue to support such projects in the fields of youth policies and policies for the reconciliation of work and family life. He expressed his hope that in the future, as a result of joint efforts, more people will be attracted to work in urban public transport.

Here, you can read the brochure created within the project.